Hershey swoops in
When Hershey Foods Corp., Hershey, Pa., developed its new Swoops candy line, the company wanted packaging that was as unique as the "potato chip-shaped" solid chocolate candies. Hershey worked with the Custom Packaging Group of Caraustar Industries Inc. (www.caraustar.com), Austell, Ga., to develop rounded-corned paperboard cartons to house the three-packs of single-serve, thermoformed plastic candy cups. The candy maker also worked with Schubert Packaging Systems (www.schubertpackaging.com), Addison, Texas, to engineer customized packaging lines incorporating Schubert carton erectors/loaders.
Hershey Foods credits innovative packaging for at least some of the market success of its new Swoops products , and credits Swoops with pumping up overall company sales in the fourth quarter of 2003.
The unusually contoured, die-cut carton blanks are designed to form around the three-count cup packs (each cup contains six candy slices) at high speeds with no gluing required. Distinctive graphics enable shoppers to quickly choose their favorite Swoops , Almond Joy, York Peppermint, Reese's, or Hershey's Chocolate.
"Hershey Kisses changed the shape of chocolate 97 years ago, and now we have done it again with Swoops," claims Hershey Foods' new product brand manager Chuck Kukic. "The innovative packaging is perfect for consumers' on-the-go lifestyle."
Hershey's Swoops paperboard cartons are a recipient of a 2004 Gold Award from the Paperboard Packaging Council. The unique candy concept, along with close attention to customized packaging details, is paying off. Hershey Foods reports overall sales for the fourth quarter of 2003 were up 2 percent, due in great part to the market success of Swoops.
Premium frozen food store brands
Safeway Inc., Pleasanton, Calif., operator of more than 1,800 grocery stores across the U.S. and Canada, is using dramatically printed, upscale paperboard packaging to heighten the shelf profile of its in-store Safeway Select Gourmet Club frozen food brand.
Safeway's in-store brand of frozen foods are dressed for success in premium-looking packaging as they compete with popular national brands.
Working with paperboard supplier/printer/converter Rock-Tenn Co. (www.rocktenn.com), Norcross, Ga., and products marketing/co-pack agent Destination Products International Ltd. (www.dpifoods.com), Toronto, Safeway has developed paperboard packaging with bold, colorful, rich-looking, appetite-appealing graphics that compete well for shopper attention with popular (typically more expensive) national frozen food brands. The packaging was honored with a 2004 Gold Award by the PPC.
Safeway points out it offers one of the most extensive and diverse private label programs in North America, including products ranging from carbonated soft drinks to bagged salads to the Gourmet Club frozen entrees and hors d'oeuvres. The premium quality of these products, along with the high-profile packaging, are key ingredients of the company's private label success.
In a constantly changing marketplace, paperboard packaging technology is not standing still, not sticking to traditional approaches, not staking its future on the past.
Innovative, ever-improving production, printing and coating techniques are poised to accept a gamut of new food and beverage packaging challenges in a cost-efficient and market-smart manner. The result, as demonstrated by these PPC award winners, often means the packaging plays an undeniable role in the product's success.